They were one of the biggest pop acts of the eighties and nineties, but after 32 years on the road Erasure still love what they do as much as ever.
And as they prepare to embark on a major tour taking in cities throughout the UK and Europe — including Dundee — one half of the iconic duo, Vince Clarke, spoke about his excitement ahead of their Tayside gig at the Caird Hall on February 2.
Speaking to the Tele, Vince — who performs alongside Andy Bell — said: “We have played some of the biggest venues in the world but we still really enjoy playing in smaller halls.
“We find stadiums really impersonal and love the rapport we can build with an audience in smaller venues such as the Caird Hall.
“In halls like that, you can see people’s faces and they can see yours and it makes for a really personal experience.
“I love playing with Andy. He loves speaking to the audience and he never repeats himself.
“He doesn’t just say the same thing to everyone who comes to see us but he really speaks to the audience we are playing in front of.”
Vince said the pair still love to perform, describing it as “incredible fun”.
He added: “We’ve just completed a big tour with Robbie Williams which was amazing but we are now looking forward to our own tour.
“People might be surprised but I still get nervous and find myself pacing about backstage.
“That is especially true at the start of a tour when you’re playing new songs and you don’t know how they will be received by the audience.
“We practice right up until the last minute before going on stage but the butterflies do kick in.
“However, once on stage we like to create a party atmosphere and we love playing in front of Scottish audiences who always give us a great reception.”
Erasure became a regular fixture in the UK singles chart and were one of the most successful acts of the era, scoring 24 consecutive Top 40 hits from 1986 to 2007.
Their strings of hits includes “A Little Respect”, “Chains Of Love”, “Ship of Fools” and “Stop!”
Vince said the pair were entering their fourth decade together with renewed creative energy.
The band have just produced their 17th studio album World Be Gone.
The album was produced by the band themselves and was recorded shortly after their 30th anniversary celebrations, during which they scored yet another UK Top 10 success with their hits package Always.
Vince added: “Instead of the heady, euphoric dance music of our 2014 album The Violet Flame, on World Be Gone the mood is thoughtful, reflective and reminiscent of 1995’s lush, experimental album Erasure.
“We’ve been doing dance albums for the past few years and I wanted this album to sound important, with a bit of soul-searching.
“Obviously, the current political climate lends itself to lots of ideas.
“I hope the album’s sense of optimism will shine through. That’s really important.”
Vince said they don’t find it hard to find inspiration and added: “We sit down with a guitar and a piano and just start to put out a couple of chords.
“Then things just start to fall into place and usually within a couple of hours we’ll have something.
“If it takes much longer than that, it’s probably because it’s not much good. The best pieces come together quickly and easily.”